a lot of people don't like the sound of truly flat audio... it sounds too thin and bright to them. they buy tube amps to warm up their sound with more midbass or get speakers that have a frequency response that they like. EQing only undoes the conscious decisions they made. i don't get it myself. nowadays with digital room correction hardware and even freeware, you can tweak your system to within half a decibel or better of perfectly flat with much less distortion than parametric and graphic analogue EQs that audioophiles might still associate with distortion. just like with old school EQs though, if you don't like the sound of flat, you can boost the bass, roll the treble off, give it the BBC midrange bump, or make an "ideal" downward slope from bass to treble that many prefer.
i really want to get into digital room correction as i'm about to get a western digital media tank to eventually use with a high end DAC on my new speakers. they don't just improve the jagged response of every speaker's frequency response, but they can also tame even worse room artifacts. i recently read one review where a person that used a DRC liked the flat sound he made a pair of cheap bookshelf speakers he bought more than his expensive quads.
you don't need expensive mics either. behringer has a calibrated mic, probably designed to go with it's $350 "bargain" DEQ2496 that many use and dayton audio has a similar model that i think even comes with an individual calibration file for about the same price. really, you can get into the game for just $50 as i'm seeing there's DRC freeware even out there now! i came here to find out about that and was going to create a thread about it as i want to find DRC freeware that i can use to apply directly to sound files stored on a media tank so i don't need the $350 + $50 for mic behrigner system i wanted after reading a couple glowing reviews for that unit. i don't want to stream off my computer. really, i might be able to get away with the sure PZM mics i already have as they're omnidirectional and flat through most of the frequency range, but $50 for a proper calibrated mic is a cheap upgrade to turn entry level speakers into high end room corrected flat gear.
as i'm using 5 1/2" energy 2 ways with their ports plugged, i know i could use at least some bass boost in my system and the bass boost on my receiver makes them sound boomy in the midbass even at 5dB.
digital room correction is the most bang for your buck you can get i think. i can't wait to hear the difference it makes. it can also compensate for amps and preamps effects on frequency response and DACs too if you have one that you can use with your PC's USB outs. for just $50 i could make my already nice speakers sound $1000+ better? sounds like a plan to me.
not just that, but maybe, i can even get flat EQ out of my system, at least down to my 40Hz limits, and then re-record from my system binaurally with a dummy head i was given by a beauty college (that REALLY freaked a passerby out one night i was waiting to record a train with) as well as compensate for my PZMs AND headphones for EQ flat mp3s with no more hole in the head imaging. if you've never heard a binaural recording, they can be scary realistic, especially at capturing ambient cues. that'd be esoteric and complicated to pull off maybe, but it's worth a try. i've already tried it with cheesy aluminum realistic minis and got a really thin sound EQing the entire signal chain would help a lot. there's a big difference between radioshack minis and energy minis too.
Edited by budget minded - 11/29/12 at 4:48pm